The season here on the farm has finished up very well as the rain continued well into this month.
We dont usually have green feed this time of the year, so it was welcome and has kept the grasseeds away for longer than usual.
And after 4 Dick Francis novels and two sleepless nights Bella presented me with six little pups on Tuesday the 16th of Oct. She was fairly tired and the pups are a bit small, but for a bitch nearly seven with her first litter she did very well. She is a great mother, very calm. And she timed it well, graciously allowing me to make it to the Margaret River trial.
I also managed to make the Albany trial which was the last one for the year.
See full results and photos of both trials here.
I was happy with my dogs, the sheep at Margaret River suited them and Caleb and Driftz both penned and managed to get into the top ten in the novice. Caleb also penned in the open event. Driftz only had one run due to her heart condition. Balto also had his first proper trial and went very well, before crossing in both runs. He managed a lovely cast lift and draw in his open run and I was happy with how calmly and wide he worked.
All three dogs ran at Albany as well but the sheep were flightier and did not suit them as well. Caleb and Drift managed to pen but it was a bit messy. Balto was a bit more out of control due to the wilder sheep in his first run, and also the showground noise was all new to him and I don’t think her heard my commands properly.
He went better in his second run and I retired him after the cast, lift and draw as the sheep had run onto the fence and I though it was a bit too tricky for a young dog.
Balto has also started doing some real farm work and is going very well, working a large mob calmly and starting to think about what he is doing.
We are halfway through shearing at present having been held up by the rain earlier on.
The weather has been very mild as well, which is a blessing but it is due to warm up soon and will be a shock to the system probably.
And as if I didnt have enough pups, I have purchased a pup from Barru stud in NSW. She flew in recently and is a lovely little girl, very friendly and outgoing despite her long trip to get here.
She has bonded to me really quickly and doesnt like to let me out of her sight. So I have named her Zilla, which means shadow.
I have also named the Ripper Jake pups I am keeping. The red and tan is Rebel and the blue/black and tan is Rocket due to her tendency to climb out of her pen. Both nice pups. Rebel is working the peacocks and chooks but neither are interested in sheep yet.
I will keep two out of Bella’s litter and that will be enough for me for a while.
So soon I will have a heap of pups to sort through, and until they are working it is impossible to pick he right one.
One can only choose a pup that they like and hope it turns out to be the sort of dog that is suited.
Part of the fun and challenge of breeding good dogs really.
And if they don’t turn out, we just try again.